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Does Medical Marijuana Availability Reduce Prescription of Anxiety Medication and Improve Mental Health?

Helgesson, Anna LU (2019) NEKP01 20191
Department of Economics
Abstract
The number of drug prescriptions has increased dramatically over the past 20 years, benzodiazepine prescriptions being a prime example with an increase of 67 percent between 1996 and 2013. Benzodiazepines are usually prescribed for anxiety; a disease marijuana has been proven to have a small yet observed effect on. Simultaneously with the increase in benzodiazepine prescriptions, mental health has emerged as one of the most expensive health issues of our time estimated to cost the world $1 billion by 2030. This study uses state-level prescription data from Medicaid (1996-2018) and individual-level survey data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance Survey (2011-2018) to estimate the effect of an introduction of a medical marijuana law... (More)
The number of drug prescriptions has increased dramatically over the past 20 years, benzodiazepine prescriptions being a prime example with an increase of 67 percent between 1996 and 2013. Benzodiazepines are usually prescribed for anxiety; a disease marijuana has been proven to have a small yet observed effect on. Simultaneously with the increase in benzodiazepine prescriptions, mental health has emerged as one of the most expensive health issues of our time estimated to cost the world $1 billion by 2030. This study uses state-level prescription data from Medicaid (1996-2018) and individual-level survey data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance Survey (2011-2018) to estimate the effect of an introduction of a medical marijuana law on benzodiazepine prescriptions and individuals’ self-reported mental health. The impact is studied with a difference-in-differences approach using the legalization of medical marijuana as the policy change. This study finds that the number of benzodiazepine prescriptions increase after the introduction of medical marijuana. This study also finds that the number of days of ill mental health decreases a medical marijuana law is introduced. Unfortunately, the results are not statistically significant at conventional levels and are therefore considered suggestive. (Less)
Popular Abstract
The number of drug prescriptions has increased dramatically over the past 20 years, benzodiazepine prescriptions being a prime example with an increase of 67 percent between 1996 and 2013. Benzodiazepines are usually prescribed for anxiety; a disease marijuana has been proven to have a small yet observed effect on. Simultaneously with the increase in benzodiazepine prescriptions, mental health has emerged as one of the most expensive health issues of our time estimated to cost the world $1 billion by 2030. This study uses state-level prescription data from Medicaid (1996-2018) and individual-level survey data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance Survey (2011-2018) to estimate the effect of an introduction of a medical marijuana law... (More)
The number of drug prescriptions has increased dramatically over the past 20 years, benzodiazepine prescriptions being a prime example with an increase of 67 percent between 1996 and 2013. Benzodiazepines are usually prescribed for anxiety; a disease marijuana has been proven to have a small yet observed effect on. Simultaneously with the increase in benzodiazepine prescriptions, mental health has emerged as one of the most expensive health issues of our time estimated to cost the world $1 billion by 2030. This study uses state-level prescription data from Medicaid (1996-2018) and individual-level survey data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance Survey (2011-2018) to estimate the effect of an introduction of a medical marijuana law on benzodiazepine prescriptions and individuals’ self-reported mental health. The impact is studied with a difference-in-differences approach using the legalization of medical marijuana as the policy change. This study finds that the number of benzodiazepine prescriptions increase after the introduction of medical marijuana. This study also finds that the number of days of ill mental health decreases a medical marijuana law is introduced. Unfortunately, the results are not statistically significant at conventional levels and are therefore considered suggestive. (Less)
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author
Helgesson, Anna LU
supervisor
organization
course
NEKP01 20191
year
type
H2 - Master's Degree (Two Years)
subject
keywords
Medical marijuana law, Mental health, Benzodiazepines, Difference-in-differences
language
English
id
8980819
date added to LUP
2019-08-08 10:25:12
date last changed
2019-08-08 10:25:12
@misc{8980819,
  abstract     = {The number of drug prescriptions has increased dramatically over the past 20 years, benzodiazepine prescriptions being a prime example with an increase of 67 percent between 1996 and 2013. Benzodiazepines are usually prescribed for anxiety; a disease marijuana has been proven to have a small yet observed effect on. Simultaneously with the increase in benzodiazepine prescriptions, mental health has emerged as one of the most expensive health issues of our time estimated to cost the world $1 billion by 2030. This study uses state-level prescription data from Medicaid (1996-2018) and individual-level survey data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance Survey (2011-2018) to estimate the effect of an introduction of a medical marijuana law on benzodiazepine prescriptions and individuals’ self-reported mental health. The impact is studied with a difference-in-differences approach using the legalization of medical marijuana as the policy change. This study finds that the number of benzodiazepine prescriptions increase after the introduction of medical marijuana. This study also finds that the number of days of ill mental health decreases a medical marijuana law is introduced. Unfortunately, the results are not statistically significant at conventional levels and are therefore considered suggestive.},
  author       = {Helgesson, Anna},
  keyword      = {Medical marijuana law,Mental health,Benzodiazepines,Difference-in-differences},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Does Medical Marijuana Availability Reduce Prescription of Anxiety Medication and Improve Mental Health?},
  year         = {2019},
}